We are solidly in the Spring market here in Northern Virginia, and it has been great! My business has been steady and strong with no complaints from me. But suddenly, in the last week or so, it is like the sky has opened up and new business is raining down hard and fast. What the heck? Where is all of this coming from?
I was chatting with my business partner Vicky Noufal about it on Monday as we were trying to sync our schedules for staff member reviews this week and what she said was really very eye opening. She said that all of the prospecting I have been doing so consistently is showing the results.
We talk about prospecting here a lot, in fact it is the topic for our March Meet Ups (have you RSVP'd for your location yet?). I don't necessarily love the term "prospecting", I like to think of it as "planting seeds". I've always done it to an extent in my business, you have to in our industry in order to have a business, but never as consistently as I have the past 6-9 months.
When I took a break to be a managing broker for 2 ½ years, my business basically went dormant, with only a monthly postcard mailer (one that I had been doing for years) still going out to my sphere, and that was it. My leads and referrals (which I track religiously) had dropped not just in half, but by close to 90%. When I went back to the field 1 year and 9 months ago it was like starting all over again. I tried some new things, established some new systems, and started following a Client Care Program that we developed which now my entire team uses. A scheduled series of client events, quarterly pop bys, monthly mailers, monthly email, and monthly call nights. I also do "just sold" postcards, prospect very selectively to a handful or so expired/withdrawns/FSBOs each month, participate in a business networking group in my town as well as sponsor several local programs at my children's schools. Some promoted widely, and some not. The Buffini Referral Maker CRM has been instrumental to me in keeping my focus on my weekly follow ups and tracking my referrals that I send out. I finally feel like I have developed a strong system for what I am doing and when and I have been doing it consistently and without fail for months now. It is that consistency that is key.
Now will be the true test ... when we are busy there is a tendency to let some of these activities go by the wayside, then before you know it spring is over, and business gets quiet. Really quiet, and it's back to grinding all over again to get restarted. Ebbs and flows are natural in our business, but trust me, it is better to have them be as the natural result of the flow of the market than from not consistently doing your prospecting or seed planting activities. The consistency of your activities will determine the consistency of your business, without a doubt.
What are some of your biggest challenges or questions when it comes to prospecting in your business? Comment with them in the group on Facebook and we will be sure to cover them at our March Meet Up!